The choice of a career is one of the most significant decisions we face in life. I have framed this decision as “What career field (type of work) should I pursue?” to distinguish it from more specific decisions such as “Employer” or “Job/Position”.
Some factors to be considered in this decision are obvious (Income, Fits my skills/abilities, Stability). Others may not seem as important at the start of your work life, but become clearer with life experience. In particular, I value:
Flexible schedule: (or at least one I can control to match my changing needs).
Satisfying: The ability to accomplish something meaningful
Personal growth: A career that continually stretches me; extends me beyond my current skill set
Rich relationships: My work should add to my connections with others, not subtract.
The full criteria pattern for the career decision follows. Of course, it needs to be prioritized and personalized to match your unique circumstances.
Which factors are most significant to you? How would you express your “Must-Have” limit or walkaway point for this factor? What is your ideal value?